Relative pronouns are those pronouns that connect a dependent clause with a main clause in one sentence. The noun or the pronoun that is referred to is called the antecedent. In English relative pronouns are basically that, what, whom, which, whose. In Italian however the relative pronouns are a little different. They are:
- il quale
- quello che
- quell che
- cio che.
Che, cui or a form of il quale is used for when the antecedent is a definite person, thing or animal. Che is not to be used with a preposition and is invariable. Cui also is invariable but cannot be used without a preposition. Il quale as well as its forms may be used with articles or with articles and prepositions. This is most often used in formal speech, or for writing or clarity. It is rarely used in actual conversational Italian.